I remember when my last boss decided to retire. I didn’t know her exact age, but I had a good idea of how old she was. It didn’t make sense to me that she was retiring so young.
I know she had a number of reasons for doing it, but she shared one that resonates with me now as we continue to find our footing here in Lima.
“I want to work a little bit on my life resume,” she said.
Those may not have been her exact words, but I understood the meaning.
She wanted to do things that made a difference…..to her.
Things that meant more to her than a “typical” corporate job.
When “enough” is truly “enough”
One of the biggest areas of stress for us right now is finding work here in Lima.
I have my job teaching English part-time (early mornings and afternoons), but it isn’t enough.
Or is it enough?
I’m beginning to take a closer look at how I define “enough.”
Granted, we’re not flush with cash, and we may soon have to tap into savings, but we’re getting by:
- We have a roof over our heads
- We eat three meals a day (if not more)
- We have clothes on our backs
- We have a car to take Adriana to therapy and to get around town
- We have the kids in sports and art classes
- We eat meals together
- We visit the beach in the summer
- We ride bikes and go to the park together
Our kids are happy, and WE are too — when we forget to worry about things and realize how easy we have it sometimes.
Many people would say we live like kings.
That’s easy to see when we drive through poorer areas of the city. And, there are plenty of those areas around.
Then I start to realize that even though we don’t have a lot of stuff, we certainly have enough.
More importantly, we’re experiencing something far more valuable than anything we have before. Life in a different country.
Even though Gaby was raised here, this return to her homeland is still a life-changing experience for her. I think it’s safe to say that 15 years in the states has changed her perspective of Peru.
Putting the work resume on hold
This is a period in my life — in this short life that we have — where I have the opportunity to add to my life resume.
I’m doing it everyday. I just never looked at it that way.
Here are some of the new “duties and responsibilities” I’ve been able to help Gaby with over the past year:
- Take our daughter, Adri, to her therapy sessions
- Witness Adri’s physical advancement as therapists help her fight her spinal muscular atrophy (SMA)
- Take Adri to her preschool classes
- Witness her classmates’ excitement when we enter the room
- Experience the warmth of Adri’s teachers as they help Adri get situated in her seat and ready for class
- Take Santi to preschool (depending on the day)
- Experience the joy in my kids’ faces when I pick them up after school
- Have lunch with the kids
- Take them to the park – Santi on his bike or scooter and Adri in her wheelchair
- Do homework with the kids
- Be there at night to put them to sleep, say prayers and listen to them tell each other to “be quiet” so they can fall asleep
As our friend Claudia reminded me, not everyone has the opportunity to spend quality time — everyday — with their kids.
Once I get a full-time job, my life’s work will end, and I’ll go back to “making a living.”
I’ll make more money, but I fear it will never be “enough.”
Which is why, for now, things are just fine.
I have plenty enough to make me happy!
[Video 1: Our friend, Claudita, loaned us her bike, and Adri couldn’t be happier. I feared she wouldn’t be able to maintain her balance, but happily I was wrong.]
[Video 2: I never thought peeling a banana would be great therapy for Adri’s fine motor skills. Notice her weaker left hand as she often struggles to keep it open.]